Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Facebook and romantic relationships

Date:
April 23, 2013
Source:
Western Illinois University
Summary:
A Western Illinois University faculty member who published a widely covered study about Facebook and narcissism last year has authored another study about Facebook and romantic relationships.

A Western Illinois University faculty member who published a study about Facebook and narcissism last year has authored another study about Facebook and romantic relationships.

WIU Department of Communication Assistant Professor Christopher Carpenter, with his co-author Erin Spottswood (Cornell University), have authored, "Exploring romantic relationships on social networking sites using the self-expansion model," which will appear in the July 2013 journal issue of Computers in Human Behavior. According to Carpenter, in the study, the co-authors found the more past romantic relationships the participants had, the more interests they listed in their Facebook profiles.

"I predicted this relationship because other research suggested that part of romantic relationship development involves adopting new interests and behaviors from one's partner," he said. "I also found that people who report appearing in more photos with their partners on Facebook and who regularly tag their partner in their status updates tend to have closer romantic relationships."

In humans, the self-expansion model -- per a seminal study authored by State University of New York, Stony Brook, Psychology Professor Arthur Aron and Elaine Aron, author of the book, "The Highly Sensitive Person" -- asserts the desire to grow is a key motivation. One of the key sources of this need to expand one's self is derived from romantic relationships.

Carpenter said he studies humans' interactions on Facebook and social networks because the online networks offer a unique window into people's lives.

"We can't follow people around with a tape recorder getting a record of what they say all day. Facebook, on the other hand, offers us the chance to see one part of that record. We can see how often people interact with their romantic partners on Facebook, what they say to each other and how they present themselves on their profiles," he explained. "As for this specific study, I had read about self-expansion theory and I began wondering if we ever truly cut ties with someone when we break up. We might not see that person anymore, but when we develop a relationship with someone, we take on some of their interests and traits and, in many cases, hang on to them long after we break up. Facebook offered a unique way of examining the extent to which those traces of past relationships remain in our profiles."

Carpenter said the study's sample included 276 respondents who answered questions about their relationship histories and social networking sites uses, while a subset of the sample (149 participants) answered additional questions about their current romantic partners.

In addition to receiving wide media attention about his 2012 study, "Narcissism on Facebook: Self-promotional and Anti-social Behavior" (published in the journal, Personality and Individual Differences, March 2012), Carpenter served as an invited Oxford Union Society speaker on the motion, "This House Believes Social Media has Successfully Reinvented Social Activism," in England in May last year.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Western Illinois University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Christopher J. Carpenter, Erin L. Spottswood. Exploring romantic relationships on social networking sites using the self-expansion model. Computers in Human Behavior, 2013; 29 (4): 1531 DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2013.01.021

Cite This Page:

Western Illinois University. "Facebook and romantic relationships." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 April 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423110713.htm>.
Western Illinois University. (2013, April 23). Facebook and romantic relationships. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423110713.htm
Western Illinois University. "Facebook and romantic relationships." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423110713.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Feast your eyes on this gorgeous family-friendly resort. Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
What Your Favorite Color Says About You

What Your Favorite Color Says About You

Buzz60 (Oct. 22, 2014) We all have one color we love to wear, and believe it or not, your color preference may reveal some of your character traits. In celebration of National Color Day, Krystin Goodwin (@kyrstingoodwin) highlights what your favorite colors may say about you. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins